Bryan Herrera collected Yu-gi-oh cards, loved computer games and was a straight-A student.
The 16-year-old was riding his bicycle to his friend’s home Saturday morning, planning to work on a school project, when he was gunned down in broad daylight in the middle of Northwest 11th Avenue and 39th Street in Miami.
The killing was so random that it shook seasoned police detectives, like homicide investigator Eldys Diaz, who called Bryan “a child still in wonder with the world.’’
When Diaz searched through Bryan’s belongings to try to find some clues as to why someone may have wanted to kill him, he found none.
Instead he found Herrera’s game cards and sketches of comic book figures.
“This is innocence in the truest sense of the word. This was a child,’’ Diaz said.
At a press conference Friday, his family called upon the public to help find the killer.
His father, William Herrera, said that while his son was 16, he was still a little boy at heart.
“He was just on his way to his best friend’s house. They were going to do their homework,’’ he said weeping.
According to police, Bryan was shot about 11 a.m. Saturday as he was riding his bicycle. He was shot once and fell to the pavement, still carrying his backpack. A witness in a red sedan stopped some bystanders and told them to call 911 after seeing the youth laying in street, police said.
He was transported to Jackson Memorial Hospital’s Ryder Trauma Unit, where he was pronounced dead. Detectives have minimal information about the shooter, and are hoping that witnesses come forward.
“He was deeply loved by his family,’’ Diaz said.
Though his father and mother are divorced, and both remarried, the parents remained close, sharing custody of Bryan and his siblings equally. His whole family, including his brother and two sisters, his stepmother and stepfather, joined together Friday to ask the public’s help in bringing Bryan’s killer to justice.
“Our Christmases will never be the same, we will always think of Bryan,’’ his father said.
Anyone with information is asked to call 305-603-6350. Those who wish to remain anonymous call contact Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS(4877) or text a messsage to 274637.